Supporting Students with Disabilities in the Classroom

48 Learners | 48 Completed Lessons | 12 Hours of Learning Time

Learning Activity

In general, classroom supports are important for all students because "ineffective instruction and classroom management can lead to low student achievement and increased referrals to special education" (Goodman, 2018). It is particularly important to keep this in mind when dealing with students with disabilities (SWD) because they often have heightened reactivity to the quality of school climate and ineffective instruction and classroom management may contribute to them being over-represented in school discipline.

Common evidence-based classroom management practices include such behavior as maximizing the structure of a classroom; developing, teaching, and reinforcing 3-5 positively stated expectations for the classroom; actively engage students in observable ways, and establishing a continuum of strategies to acknowledge appropriate behavior and respond to inappropriate behavior. For SWDs, Steven Goodman of Michigan's Integrated Behavior & Learning Support Initiative recommends to intensify interventions and supports with:

  • Precision - The focus of instruction and support related to the key concepts necessary for social competence. Precision includes the scope and sequence for learning.
  • Practice - Increasing the number of opportunities to respond.
  • Feedback - Providing learners with positive, instructive, and corrective information about their responses.
  • Integrations - Utilize quality, effective instruction to reduce student engagement in problem behaviors and increase academic engagement. Further, ensure students stay on track academically to reduce work-aversive academic attitudes and escape-maintained problem behaviors.
  • Teaming - Effective IEP teams should have knowledge about & technical expertise in behavior theory, know the student(s) they're working with, and understand the context in which a behavior plan will be implemented.

For this activity, view the presentation and the videos linked in the Resources section.    

Resources

Supporting Students with Disabilities in the Classroom (download)


Inclusion of students with disabilities


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